Sixty per cent of households in western Kenya are dependent on fish as a source of protein. But overfishing in Lake Victoria has depleted fish stocks and led to price rises.
The Kenyan government has responded by building fish ponds and promoting fish farming as a source of food and income. However, farmers still have little access to high quality inputs and technical advice.
This is why Farm Africa has been supporting the government’s policy by establishing a network of aqua shops, which are an invaluable source of quality support and training for Kenya’s new fish farmers.
We are working with community entrepreneurs to sharpen their technical and business skills, and identify aquaculture business opportunities in five counties in Western Kenya (Kakamega, Kisumu, Vihiga, Busia and Kisii).
The Aqua Shops are managed by local business owners who invest in the establishment of the shops and provide smallholders with inputs and technical advice on best aquaculture practices. They then stock appropriate high quality inputs and also provide market information and teach fish farmers how to link their businesses with markets to generate additional income.
The project has grown significantly over the last three years, with the establishment of 38 Aqua Shops and collaboration with more than 52 entrepreneurs. During this period, over 7,500 farmers have been reached through sales of inputs and provision of technical information, resulting in a 36% increase in production and 63% increase in farmer incomes.